Ankyloglossia AKA Tongue Tie

A tongue tie is tissue that connects tongue and the floor of the mouth, which can restrict tongue movement. Tongue tie impedes breast- or bottle-feeding, eating, swallowing, speech sounds, and sleeping.

tongue-tie oromyofunctional therapy speech therapy
Ankyloglossia tongue-tie myofunctional therapy speech therapy

A tongue tie prevents the tongue from resting on the roof of the mouth, which is essential for correct oral rest posture. When the tongue is not resting on the roof of the mouth, a high narrow palate may develop, which negatively impacts face, mouth, and teeth development/growth. A tongue-tie falls within the category of tethered oral tissues (TOTs). TOTs also include lip-ties and buccal-ties (or cheek-tie).

Myofunctional Therapists can provide assessment of tongue ties and how it has impacted feeding, swallowing, sucking, and breathing.

Tongue Tie Symptoms:

  • Sleep apnea

  • Snoring

  • Teeth movement, turning, or crowding

  • Gaps between teeth

  • High narrow palate

  • Orthodontic relapse

  • Speech-articulation difficulties

  • Food aversions

  • Muscle tension

  • TMJ

The role of the speech-language pathologist in regards to Tethered Oral Tissues (TOTs) ?

SLPs specialize in the areas of feeding, swallowing, and speech/language development. TOTs can impact with each of these skills. SLPs with training in orofacial myofunctional diosrders can identify TOTs and evaluate their impact. After evaluation, the SLP will make referrals to a specialized ENT (otolaryngologist), dentist, and/or oral surgeon for further evaluation. SLPs with training in orofacial myofunctional therapy will provide pre and post surgery intervention, which may include: tissue stretches, exercises, and other recommendations to decrease scar tissue and increase/maintain mobility.

Speech Language Voice & Swallowing PLLC can help with before and after care of tongue tie releases. Contact us today to learn more!


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